Cleaning your dollhouses

26 posts in this topic

Anyone have any cleaning secrets to share? How detailed do you get cleaning your houses and how often do you do it ? Do you remove everything first and polish floors? The hardest is the landscaping especially cleaning delicate flowers. And nothing looks worse than dusty flower beds..:-)

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Insides - I just take things out and clean as I would any knickknack or display, using whatever solution is appropriate for the item.

I have found that the curtains don't hold up well to washing and dusting doesn't clean them at all. I have just discarded them and haven't replaced them yet. Still thinking on how to solve the cleaning problem before I invest time in making new ones.

Landscaping - I'm all ears on this!!

Up until now, Twinkles barn is our only fully landscaped piece and it is looking bad. It has that adhesive backed moss for the grass and I cannot figure out how to clean it. I tried blowing it with air and it didn't do anything for the look of it. It simply dislodged a lot of the "grass".

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I get out the mini vacuum attachment set when things look really groddy. Someone posted about using the little containers of compressed air.

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I use a big soft make up blush brush to dust things. I also empty the house and use canned air (carefully) to blow out dust. That's for the big house. For half scale I store them in a curio cabinet, which eliminates the problem.

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The roof on my Glencroft gets bad, I use a stiff brush and run the vacuum. But the landscaping and flowers--that is a challenge!

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When I took the farmhouse out of storage it was a disaster. I used Windex on the siding and windows. I wasn't worried about the paint coming off and SURPRISE it didn't. I don't know about landscaping since I barely have any. Some of the old things I get at flea markets and antique stores.....soft cloth and minimal water. No harsh chemicals. Pledge seems to work pretty good also.

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In museums for delicate items they cover the vacuum hose nozzle with a piece of nylon, so nothing gets accidentally sucked up. I haven't tried that yet but it sounded like a good idea. Might work for landscaping. I use paintbrushes for dusters

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In museums for delicate items they cover the vacuum hose nozzle with a piece of nylon, so nothing gets accidentally sucked up. I haven't tried that yet but it sounded like a good idea. Might work for landscaping. I use paintbrushes for dusters

I can tell you from personal experience that covering the vacuum nozzle with an old nylon most definitely keeps things from being sucked into oblivion!

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I don't have any landscaping to worry about, although I just noticed that part of the green felt I laid down as grass is a bit dusty, so I will have to brush that off or wash the piece. If I had landscaping, I would use the compressed air cans, as that works well with getting into tiny areas, although the air pressure may be harsh on delicate items.

My problem was with miniature food items. I threw out most of my old food items because they either broke while trying to dust them or they still contained embedded dust after all my cleaning efforts.

I enclosed the back of the dollhouse with Plexiglas, and that works wonders in keeping the dust out. Before that, I would clean the furniture pieces like my regular wood furniture by using either Endust or furniture polish. I would take out all the furniture room by room, then clean the floors, ceilings, and walls first.

I do the same thing now when dusting the porch. I remove the pieces and thoroughly dust the floor. My friend gave me a soft brush for the roof, as she didn't want me loosening any shingles with vigorous dusting.

Lots of luck with your spring cleaning and landscapping.

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In museums for delicate items they cover the vacuum hose nozzle with a piece of nylon, so nothing gets accidentally sucked up. I haven't tried that yet but it sounded like a good idea. Might work for landscaping. I use paintbrushes for dusters

You beat me to it! For really delicate things, I use a piece of thin tee shirt knit instead of the nylon.

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Maybe a soft toothbrush would work. I am not sure if I would use water or another solution while cleaning a dollhouse, but I use soft bristle toothbrushes for tough spots on nicknacks with a little water on occasion. Maybe one of those computer keyboard vacuums for the landscaping with the nylon suggestion.

During my builds (or prior to giving/displaying) I use a paintbrush or make-up brush to clean up dust and etc within the house and used a paint brush on the landscaping of one of the dollhouses I gave this past Christmas.

I haven't dared to 'clean' the Heritage yet. I am glad this subject was brought up because the Heritage does need a good cleaning. Honestly, though, I have been afraid to tackle the job for fear of messing her up.

Thanks for the tip on the curtains. I guess I will think about what I will do for curtains before I attempt to clean the 'Heritage'. I had thought they would be easy to clean and rehang or clean where they are.

Great subject/topic if conversation. Thanks. Looking forward to seeing what others do or have for suggestions.

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I use a lot of lemon oil on wood furniture and floors. It revitalizes the wood. I use a stiff oil painting brush. Then wipe it with a soft cloth. It has to be done at about six month intervals to keep things looking good. I also cheat and use it on poly clay too. Brush it on and get down in all of the cracks and crevices. Then again, wipe it off well with a soft cloth. It seems to "pull" the dust off.

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I use Qtips and a couple of paint brushes and pledge. For landscaping I use a spray bottle of water with paper towel around the bottom to soak up the water. I find canned air doesn't work, I use my air compressor with the air nozzle. Much more powerful and effective. (I blow the air on shingles and landscaping, then spray landscaping with water) I recently bought some of that chandelier spray for my real lights and I am thinking of trying it on some of my mini lights as well since it claims to not damage finishes.

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This is soooo on my list of spring cleaning (Ok yeah, several springs behind). Good tips!

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Grrr, don't remind me about the dust in my tollhouses please! Lol I had been thinking of getting in there this week sometime and dusting them off.

I empty them completely and use a make up brush to dust the furniture with. I use a little furniture polish on a cloth to dust and clean out the floors.

Once the dollhouse is completely empty, I use an electric air blower to dust it with. I just thought that a hair dryer set on cold air would do the same thing and be more gentle. The air blower removes all dust from shingles and landscaping.

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Cheap fishtanks? Don't they make them in acrylic too (for fishtanks without fish/water? - can't remember what they're called... hahaha)?

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I remember someone talking about how you could get a "leaker" cheap if you were using for a roombox or dollhouse cover....

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I was reading thru this topic of how-to tips for cleaning a dollhouse and in a few responses, some of you said that you take out all of the furniture before cleaning.  So to combine this topic with the topic of what you use to keep furniture in place (poster putty, museum wax, glue dots, etc), I was wondering how much of your furniture you adhere in place when you are decorating your dollhouse?  Also, if you remove furniture that you have adhered in place to do cleaning, do you have problems re-adhering the furniture back in the dollhouse after cleaning?

One other question...do you adhere a rug to hardwood floor and then adhere the furniture to the rug?  Or is there a better method to do this when decorating a dollhouse?

As always, thanks, in advance, for any and all advice.

 

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I use kneadable poster putty to adhere furniture and accessories, if I'm going to stick them down for later removal.  As long as no splinters get into the putty I just peel it off and when I'm ready to restick whatever it is I just give that little wad of putty a kneading to soften it and reuse it.

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Thanks, Holly!  Can I use poster putty to stick the rug to the hardwood floor and also to stick the furniture to the rug?

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I don't stick down my rugs or the furniture on them.  I use it for things like the bar and barstools in the pub.

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I don't stick down the rugs either. The weight of the furniture on top of them pretty much holds them in place. 

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